VCE Intros Entry-level Vblocks, Unveils Pre-Configured SAP HANA Appliances


The Vblock 100 is designed to host up to 200 virtual machines in a 24U or 42U rack mount space with up to eight Cisco C220 M3 blade servers, two Cisco Catalyst 3750-X switches and up to 8 TB of storage capacity on an EMC VNXe3150 or VNXe3300 array.

The Vblock 200 comes configured with up to 12 Cisco servers, two Nexus 5548UP unified Ethernet and SAN switches, a Cisco Catalyst 3750 management switch, and up to 105 hard drives via the included VNX 5300 array.

Like all Vblocks, the Vblock 100 and Vblock 200 are sold only via indirect sales channels, VCE's Martin said.

VCE also refreshed the Vblock 300 and Vblock 700 with increased performance and data throughput thanks to upgrades to their Cisco server and EMC storage components, he said.

To better manage customers Vblocks, VCE also introduced VCE Vision Intelligent Operations software, a new application that provides a single management pane for the various components in the systems, Martin said.

"Think of it as -- and I hate this analogy -- the BIOS on a PC," he said. "It manages all the components of the Vblock as a single entity. The software makes a Vblock look as one seamless product instead of as components, all in a single pane of glass."

VCE on Thursday also introduced the Vblock Specialized System SAP HANA, a fully configured solution combining a Vblock with the SAP HANA in-memory computing and database application.

SAP HANA is available only as pre-configured appliance-like solutions from infrastructure hardware vendors, including solutions recently introduced by VCE rivals such as Dell and Hitachi Data Systems (HDS).

SAP, along with virtual desktop infrastructure (VDI), Microsoft Exchange and Microsoft SharePoint, is one of the biggest use cases for Vblocks today, Martin said. "We have a lot of SAP installs where we fine-tune the hardware for the application, but we haven't pre-loaded the application before," he said.

For Long View Systems, the introduction of the Vblock Specialized System SAP HANA comes at just the right time, Long View Systems' MacDonald said.

Long View Systems is now going through the registration process to be a SAP partner, but the company's expertise comes primarily as an infrastructure provider, he said.

"But most SAP partners don't have infrastructure capabilities," he said. "So I can see us partnering with traditional SAP integrators. You don't become a SAP integrator overnight. And conversely, you don't become an infrastructure provider overnight."

The Vblock 100 is currently available, while the Vblock 200 and the Vblock Specialized System SAP HANA are both currently in early customer shipments, with general availability scheduled for early in the second quarter.

PUBLISHED FEB. 21, 2013